Pentax Optio WG-2 GPS
Intelligent functions; impressive macro mode
Soft images; flimsy battery cover
Looking like a slightly more colourful (and tougher) build of Batman’s bodysuit, the WG-2 is the latest rugged model from Pentax.
Spec-wise, the WG-2 offers an impressive lineup of tough features, including a 12m waterproof rating, shockproof to 1.5m, crushproof to 100kg and freezeproof to -10 degrees Celsius. The 16-megapixel CMOS sensor is partnered with a GPS sensor for geotagging images and digital image stabilisation.
The WG-2 is thinner and longer than the other cameras on test, which makes it easier to hold and control one-handed. The navigation buttons, while small, are all raised enough to be easily accessible, although can be tough to control while wearing bulky gloves.
Pentax offers a couple of really handy functions on the WG-2. The first is self-portrait assist, which uses a ring of LED lights around the lens to indicate which way to tilt the camera when taking a self-portrait. It’s simple and clever, and useful for lone adventurers wanting to get in their shots.
The other is 1cm macro mode, which lets you get right up close to your subject. The LED lights can be used to illuminate the object as well, helping you take much better photos of small things.
The downside with the WG-2 is the image quality. While brightly lit outdoor scenes are well reproduced, images taken in less than ideal situations end up soft, washed out and a little bit underwhelming.
The other issue is that the cover for the battery and SD card slot feels flimsy, despite its locking mechanism. It truthfully doesn’t feel like it would keep water out 12m underwater, although we didn’t get the chance to check.
Macworld Australia’s buying advice.
A good option for the solo adventurer or those who like up close macro images, but soft photos may sway photographers to other cameras.